Michael J. Fox is a well-liked actor who has been in the public eye since the 1980s. His films have received several accolades. Despite the devastating news that he would be diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in the early 1990s, when he was just 29 years old, Fox has been able to rely on his wife and fellow actor Tracy Pollan for support through it all. Despite the fact that the pair was confronted with Fox’s health diagnosis early on in their relationship, they chose to work through it together. As a result, they have shown how loving and supportive a marriage can be even in the face of significant obstacles in one’s life.
Born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, in 1961, Fox had an interest in acting early on in his childhood, and after shooting the Canadian comedy “Leo and Me,” he moved out to Los Angeles in 1979 to make it big. Clearly, the people in LA could see the promise in him, because pretty long, he was cast as Alex P. Keaton in “Family Ties,” which lasted from 1982–1989.
It was on the set of the series that Fox first met his would-be wife Pollan – their characters even portrayed on-screen love interests! But since they were both in relationships at the time, they wouldn’t begin dating until later on.
In the meanwhile, Fox’s career only continued to soar, and by the mid-’80s, he was a celebrity and teen idol, starring in movies such as the “Back to the Future” serial and “Teen Wolf.”
Not long later, Fox and Pollan reconnected on the set of their 1988 movie “Bright Lights, Big City,” and eventually, their love flowered. However, Pollan has now confessed that she didn’t take an immediate like to Fox – in fact, she didn’t really like him at all! Thankfully, their love was meant to be, as they’ve since endured the test of time and are due to celebrate their 35th wedding anniversary in July 2023.
After their relationship developed on the set of “Bright Lights, Big City,” Fox and Pollan dated for barely seven months before becoming engaged on Dec. 26, 1987. They were married the next year on July 16, 1988, at the West Mountain Inn in Arlington, Vermont.
But years later, Pollan admitted during an interview on “Inside the Actor’s Studio,” as reported by Mental Floss, that her initial impression of Fox was not a pleasant one. When asked by presenter James Lipton what she thought of her future husband when they first met, Pollan said:
“He had a positive outlook on his own abilities. I’m not sure, but I guess I got the impression that he was a little too full of himself.
But when she had a more in-depth conversation with Fox, she came to a quite different conclusion. She went on to say that
“We began to work together and I got a whole other idea and how absolutely contrary from that he was — incredibly humorous and so brilliant, and just all of these other things came through those first two weeks we worked together.”
Soon after the couple tied the knot, in 1989, they were blessed with their first and only child, a boy named Sam. Sadly, it was two years later, in 1991 — and before they had any more children — that Fox learned his awful diagnosis. The world that Fox knew was broken, but he and Pollan were able to withstand the storm together. Although Fox didn’t publicly share the news for another nine years and continued to work all through the ’90s, the toll that his sickness had on him — and Pollan — personally was significant.
Fox started drinking excessively in an effort to bury his emotions. But when Fox woke up the next morning in 1992 after a night of drinking with pals, everything was different for him as a direct result of Pollan’s harsh love.
Fox remembered to People that he spotted Pollan and Sam, both of whom were just 3 years old at the time, when he awakened that morning with a spilt can of beer on the carpeting. Pollan and Sam had been in the room with him.
“I conducted a leisurely sweep up from her feet to her face, expecting to find her to be terribly furious…. But instead, she seemed calm.” She wasn’t. “I think she was simply bored,” the actor said to explain her behavior.
Pollan questioned him, “Is this what you want?” and went out the door before he could respond. Fox drank the beer as his very last beverage. He started going to therapy, gave up drinking, and started a new chapter in his life, one in which he accepted the fact that he had Parkinson’s disease and worked hard to make the most of his circumstances.
Fox told People, while he was describing his new way of thinking, that acceptance is not the same thing as surrender. He proceeded, saying, “Now I am able to proceed. I can launch the (Michael J. Fox Foundation) (Michael J. Fox Foundation). I’m able to collaborate with other patients. I can stay with my family and let them to worry about me.”
In the years that followed, Fox and Pollan had three additional children — twins Aquinnah and Schuyler in 1995 and Esmé in 2001
Laughter is one of the things that helps the family of six get through difficult times, which is one of the reasons they are such strong supports of one another.
During an interview on Today, Fox said:
“Tracy’s fantastic. She’s there on the front lines with me every day. She never makes any pretense that she is as knowledgeable as I am. The second thing that Tracy does is, if there is anything hilarious, she will direct the conversation toward that topic. The unfortunate event will be addressed at a later time.”
He conveyed his thoughts by saying, “It’s extremely fantastic to have a partner.” After the pair celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary in 2018, Fox said the following to People:
“It’s really simple to be hopeful. This is how I spend my days… What is there to complain about?”